Last Night’s Seminar
May 16, 2007
I went to the Organic Gardening in Small Spaces course last night. They were selling a manual called, “Garden Guide: A Product of Community Garden Network of Ottawa“ (English PDF file).
Here’s some of the stuff I learned:
- Pine needles are a great mulch.
- You can use empty 250 ml milk cartons to collect bugs. Just open both sides of the top, tap the bugs in, close the top, push it down into a cube and leave it beside your garden. The bugs inside will die and you can toss them into the soil the next time you go back to pick more bugs.
- AccuTest Laboratories does soil testing in the Ottawa area.
- Tomatoes can self-fertilize which means that you can grow them in your house.
- When growing indeterminate, vining tomatoes you should cut the main stem once the plant has put out four to five clusters of flowers. This will ensure that the plant will put its energy into growing the flowers into fruit instead of putting it into growing the vine.
- The first seven or eight flowers on a squash plant are male, which grow directly off the vine. Female flowers have a short stump (barbell) between it and the vine.
- Sunflowers send out a chemical in the soil that prevents other plants from growing (similar to the black walnut tree).
- A great book on dealing with pests is called, “The Organic Gardener’s Handbook of Natural Insect and Disease Control“.
It was very interesting and the handouts on pH, composting material, fertilzers and books were great. We were also given a layout for a 10′ x 10′ vegetable garden which seemed to coincide with the Community Garden Network’s new garden plot, Orleans Community Garden. If you’re interested in a garden plot, you can help set up the garden on Saturday, June 2 at 9 AM (rain date is Sunday, June 3) at 3350 St. Joseph Blvd, across the street from the police station.